Skin Care

By Allison Beck

Spring is all about starting anew – new blades of grass peeking through the dirt, new baby chicks chirping from limbs in Central Park, and a new look. But, before you reach for those hot new eye shadows, sparkly bronzers, and shiny lip-glosses to hide your pasty, blotchy skin or detract from forming crow’s feet, why not consider improving your skin without makeup?

Just in time for spring and tropical vacations, Clarins has created the Intensive Age-Control Brightening Program that leaves your skin reborn in just 21 days. During a time of year when my skin couldn’t look any worse – pale, blotchy, and ragged, with the dreaded fine lines and dark circles apparent around my eyes, I could not resist testing this new regime. I’m thankful I did, because not only were the results quickly gratifying, but my skin has also never looked more firm, or bright!

I started the regime over a weekend by applying the two concentrates as directed. The first thing I noticed was how amazingly smooth my skin felt the next morning. Usually my skin feels a little dry and taut, despite my dedication to a night cream, but these concentrates addressed that problem right from the start. By midweek, I noticed the red splotches on my upper cheekbones had diminished, and my skin felt smoother and firmer. By the end of the week, I noticed that my skin was not as pale and drab as it usually is by this point in the winter, but was instead glowing. The fine lines that were beginning to show around my eyes and mouth (yes, already!) had also disappeared – not to mention the wonderful smooth feel of my face every morning. I was hooked!

So, what is up with these little bottles of magic? Clarins developed this program to address the need of a woman’s skin in a simple yet powerful, two-step program that provides intensive skin lifting, firming, and brightening – combating the signs of time, and environmental and emotional stressors. The aim is to transform dull complexions into luminous skin, and to reduce the appearance of sun, age, and dark spots. What more could a busy modern woman ask for, then an effortless route to a youthful complexion!

an image

The first little bottle in the program is the Age-Control Concentrate, a concentrated, yet lightweight, serum that regenerates the skin, rebalancing the skin’s vital functions, and enhancing luminosity. It contains Glistin™, a sequence of amino acids that stimulates the skin’s renewal process; Lotus Zymbiosome, which slows the production of melanin, the innate chemical responsible for dark spots; and Alistin, which boosts the production of collagen fibers. It also contains Linseed, which soothes irritated skin, and a natural moisturizing complex to maintain skin’s moisture balance. After days, I had proof of the product’s efficacy; the eczema above the corners of my eyes stopped acting up in less than a week.

The second step in the program is the Brightening Concentrate, a delicate cream that reduces the appearance of dark spots and helps reveal a brighter complexion. This concentrate includes Clarins’ Exclusive Super-Activated Lock-Around System, which balances the skin using stable easily absorbable forms of vitamin C and guava to prevent signs of aging such as wrinkles and droopy skin. It also includes other brightening ingredients such as parsley and raspberry, which stimulate the skin’s pink glow; grapefruit and Japanese mandarin, which brighten the complexion; and strawberry and gentian, which eliminate toxins.

My rave reviews aren’t the only proof this regimen is worth a try. A clinical study of 35 women with sensitive and combination skin, as well as pigmentation, showed significant results. The subjects applied the products every night for 21 days instead of their regular evening products. Upon application, the women found their skin was softer and smoother. After 21 days, 75 percent of the women noticed brighter skin, 79 percent noticed more luminous skin, and 84 percent noticed a more even complexion. Furthermore, Lotus Zymbiosome hindered the production of a factor that enables excessive production of melanin by 39.2 percent, thereby slowing the development of age spots.
Dermatologists conducted another study, this one with 12 women with pigmentation spots, ages 39 to 59. Subjects witnessed a reduction in size and color of spots by nearly 15 percent.

We all know what skin looks like after months of harsh weather, nights of drinking and puffing, and days sustained off of coffee, cigarettes, and four hours of sleep. The only thing worse than drab attire is dull skin and dry hair. So, I encourage you to try this user-friendly program. It provides instant gratification, and it’s so effective, you’ll have strangers commenting on your fresh, more firm, and youthful complexion.

Clarins’ Intensive Age-Control Brightening Program is priced at $140.00 is available at Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Lord and Taylor beginning in April.

Originally published March 2006
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